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Caithness Field Club Bulletin
|Two Winter Solstice Observations (by
Some standing stones appear to
have been erected to mark solar observations. These are not quite correct
in 2007 due to the gyroscopic wobble of the earth's axis. This movement is
well understood so the dates of erection have been calculated to be about
The Dorrery Site
On the shortest day of 2007, 21 December, cloudless and still, a group of members met at the gates of Dorrery Lodge at noon and tramped NW across deep heather to a standing stone. This stone is the only upright survivor of a stone circle, but with two fallen stones the 36.5M radius circle can be defined, and a wooden stake had been placed earlier at the centre at ND 06855 655631, which is the observation point. At 12.55am the sun started to pass behind two humps on Dorrery Hill, and by 1.05pm the sun was hidden.
The Acharole Site
Our member Leslie Myatt was abroad so unable to guide us himself this year, but his "The Standing Stones of Caithness" published in 2003, carries on the work of Professor Thom in reading the message of the stones, and served as our guide.